The Donald Trump Show (Dehumanization)

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks to supporters in Everett, Washington, 30 August 2016. (Detail of frame via YouTube)

“In this election, it shouldn’t be hard to figure out who believes in humanity and who is subhuman.”

Jonathan Allen

So … yeah. Jonathan Allen has something to say:

It can be hard to tell how Donald Trump thinks. The man switches directions with all the forethought of a cat chasing a flashlight spot.

For days, Trump’s top campaign aides seemed to be making pronouncements based on what they hoped he’d say about immigration in Phoenix on Wednesday night, not out of any real knowledge of his plans. He then proceeded to make anyone who had said anything about what he’d do―including himself―look foolish.

In talking about immigrants, he offered everyone a Windexed view of his blackened soul and the morally bankrupt way he thinks about people.

Ouch. Damn.

There is, actually, a reasonable critique against Donald Trump’s incendiary rhetoric and divisive, even dangerous behavior, but the veteran political reporter unloads on the Republican presidential nominee; the headline reads, “You’re the Subhuman One, Donald”. We might presume the rubber-glue petulance is intended to make a point; one wonders, though, if the HRC author and betrayer of press customs is the best messenger on this occasion:

In this election, it shouldn’t be hard to figure out who believes in humanity and who is subhuman.

There are a lot of reasons to vote for or against a presidential candidate―and his or her views on justice, equality and human dignity are only a few of them―but they should weigh heavily on anyone who believes that all men and women are created equal. Trump is not one of them.

That’s pretty ferocious, and as much as I sympathize with the fire-breathing critique and writhing fever for the flavor of a fuck-you we must also remember the adage―or is it a proverb? an aphorism? a cookie fortune?―about the measure of a society reflected in how it regards its most despised. Donald Trump is, and must necessarily remain human; we cannot afford to meet him on this field. Donald Trump may be a terrible human being, but he is a human being.

____________________

Image note: Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks to supporters in Everett, Washington, 30 August 2016. (Detail of frame via YouTube)

Allen, Jonathan. “Confessions of a Clinton reporter: The media’s 5 unspoken rules for covering Hillary”. Vox. 6 July 2015.

—————. “You’re the Subhuman One, Donald”. Roll Call. 1 September 2016.

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